Most people are familiar with the term “workers’ compensation,” but not everyone knows what it covers or what it means. Workers’ compensation gives benefits to injured workers by law. It gives you financial protection and medical care if you are hurt while on the job and prevents your employer from being sued.
Workers’ compensation helps protect both workers and employers. When an employee receives workers’ compensation benefits, they forgo their right to sue their employer for negligence. There are many different benefits of workers’ compensation claims you should know.
If you have been injured in a work-related accident, you are entitled to compensation. Don’t try and handle your injuries alone. The Law Offices of T. Andrew Miller can make sure you recieve all of the workers’ compensation benefits you deserve.
One of the main benefits of workers’ compensation is paid medical coverage. This pays for the employee’s treatment for their work-related illness or injury. This includes bills from doctor’s offices, hospital treatment, medications, physical therapy, medical equipment, and more.
Typically, medical coverage isn’t a set dollar amount. Payment continues until medical treatment ends. However, some states may have restrictions for specific treatments. For example, some states may only allow a maximum number of visits for things like physical therapy. Just because a treatment is covered in one state doesn’t mean coverage in another.
In Georgia, employers are responsible for paying authorized medical bills for up to 400 weeks after your injury. It’s essential to keep in mind that some states require an injured employee to be seen by a doctor the insurance carrier has chosen.
Of course, an employee with severe or life-threatening injuries should immediately go to the emergency room. Still, when your condition is more stable, you should talk to your employer about acceptable physicians.
If you cannot do your past job because of your accident, you may need rehabilitation to get you back on your feet. It will help you develop the skills you need so you can return to your job.
To get your rehabilitation covered, you must get approval from the insurance company covering your medical expenses. Most states provide some kind of coverage for rehabilitation after a work-related injury, and some states also offer psychological rehabilitation if you have a work-related mental injury.
After a work-related accident, you may have injuries that are so severe you cannot work. This disability could be either temporary or permanent, but you could qualify for disability benefits either way. Workers’ compensation coverage gives disabled employees benefits that help cover their medical bills and replace some of their missing wages.
You may end up with a disability that didn’t go away after treatment for a work-place injury, also known as a permanent partial disability (PPD), meaning you have some sort of permanent impairment that keeps you from fulfilling all your previous work duties at their full capacity. This is the most common type of workers’ compensation case.
Here are some of the most common PPD injuries:
- carpal tunnel syndrome
- amputation of a body part, such as a finger or a hand
- hearing loss
- loss of vision in one eye
- knee injury
- nerve damage, or
- PTSD, also known as a post-traumatic stress disorder
If you are permanently, totally disabled after a work-related accident and cannot work anymore, you could be entitled to a lifetime pension. Contact an experienced workers’ compensation attorney to find out what your options are.
Compensation for lost wages
When you are in a work-related accident and must miss work due to your injuries, you miss out on valuable paychecks. Workers’ compensation helps fill the gaps when you cannot work, though it isn’t the same amount as your usual paycheck.
During the period you are missing work, workers’ compensation provides coverage for a portion of your typical income while you recover from your temporary disability.
The amount you receive depends on the way your disability is classified, such as:
- Temporary total disability: You are unable to work for a brief period
- Permanent total disability: You have a total and permanent loss of your ability to work
- Temporary partial disability: Your ability to work is partially lost, temporarily
- Permanent partial disability: You are partially disabled permanently, so part of your workability is lost.
These factors help determine how much you will be paid for your missing wages and the amount of time you will receive them.
If you lose a loved one through a work-related injury, you may be entitled to death benefits through Georgia’s workers’ compensation system. Death benefits compensate family members for the loss of financial support their deceased loved one provided them.
Those who receive these benefits are related by blood or marriage, such as a spouse, child, or another close relative who depend on their financial support. Eligibility is determined based on the circumstances of each case.
To qualify for these death benefits, a work-related injury or illness must have either caused or directly contributed to your family member’s death. Even if injured workers die months later, their loved ones can file for compensation if the accident was related to their death.
These workers’ compensation death benefits can also apply to funeral costs. There is typically a maximum amount that can be used for it.
Need help filing for workers’ compensation benefits?
Have you or a family member suffered a work-related accident? Do you qualify for compensation? Make sure you acquire an experienced workers’ compensation attorney to help you with your case.
The Law Offices of T. Andrew Miller would be honored to help you defend your case. We specialize in workers’ compensation cases and will protect you and your loved ones every step of the way until you have your check in hand.
Are you ready to get started with your workers’ compensation case? Call our Atlanta office at 678-605-9109 for a free consultation, or contact us through our website.